Wake Forest Athletics Pioneer Dot Casey Passes Away
July 17, 2013
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. -- Wake Forest athletics is sad to announce the passing of Hall of Fame member Dorothy "Dot" Casey. Casey died on July 16, 2013 at the age of 87.
Few people were more important to the evolution of women's athletics at Wake Forest than Dot Casey. Prior to 1971, women only competed in intramural athletics at Wake Forest. But Casey and lifelong friend Marge Crisp teamed to start an intercollegiate program that became the foundation of women's athletics today.
Casey and Crisp were the first two women elected to the Wake Forest Sports Hall of Fame in 1993. Casey's citation was a reward for her patient but firm guidance of the Demon Deacon women's athletic program through its early years and into the highly competitive world of college competition for women.
Casey's affiliation with Wake Forest began in 1949, when she joined the physical education faculty. She was active in a leadership capacity in the physical education field before becoming officially involved with intercollegiate athletics in 1974 when she replaced Crisp as women's athletic director at Wake Forest. In that role, she guided the Deacon women's program through Title IX and from the physical education program into the athletic department. Her first women's teams at Wake Forest competed at the AIAW Division II level; her final squads just prior to her retirement in 1988 were contending for national honors on the NCAA Division I level.
Casey was born in Dudley, N.C., and attended Louisburg Junior College before graduating from UNC Greensboro (then Women's College) in 1948. She received her master's degree from the UNC Chapel Hill in 1951. She joined the Wake Forest physical education faculty in 1949 and remained at Wake throughout her professional career.
"When I came here in 1949, women's athletics were purely intramural," Casey said in an interview with Window on Wake Forest in 1988. "Part of my job was to encourage female students to play a sport - any sport - whether it was basketball, golf, table tennis or shuffleboard."
A memorial service will be held on Friday, July 19 at 2 p.m. at the Salemtowne Retirement Community Center with a reception immediately following. A formal burial will take place at 11 a.m. on Saturday, July 20 in Dudley, N.C, at the Emmaus Baptist Church.